Last week we spoke with Andy Halliday on the podcast and we asked him to do something a little bit different. The reason being Andy has done brilliant podcasts on Open Goal or Hand & Hand so we wanted to do something a bit different.
So Andy picked his top three Rangers games which you can read here 👉🏻 https://t.co/CJHdORYjGs
The podcast to listen to you can find here 👉🏻 https://www.gersnet.co.uk/index.php/news-category/current-affairs/1189-4ladshadadream-the-podcast-with-andy-halliday-e21
We also asked Andy to pick his favourite Rangers team from the teammates he played with. Andy went with a 4-2-3-1 and this is the team he went with –
I think Wes was a brilliant servant for the football club for the first two, three years and one of the ones that done really well for us. But, saying that, I think Allan McGregor will go down in the top three, in my opinion, goalies in our history. He has got to be the number one in my team. Since he has come back under Steven Gerrard – at 37, 38, whatever he is – I can’t remember him making a mistake for a goal and you see it every day in training the saves that he pulls off and how vocal he is for his defenders. He is probably the guy that I have seen make the best save in the history of football with his save against Werder Bremen. I can’t remember seeing a better save than that. Since I have played with him, he has been second to none and arguably our best player under Steven Gerrard over the last couple of years.
I was on the bench at the time [against Hibernian] and I was probably like the majority of the fans at the time thinking ‘what just happened there?’ because it looked like there was absolutely nothing in it. When Greegsy got sent off, I went into the changing room and said ‘what happened? Why have you been sent off?’ and he looked me dead in the eye, outraged, saying ‘I can’t believe it, I never touched it, I can’t believe I have been sent off. I just kicked the ball and my follow through grazed him on the back’. That is just typical Greegsy and I see the replay five minutes later and he is still trying to tell me that is not a red card. I don’t know under what sport that is not a red card. Don’t get me wrong, he is a bit crazy but all goalies are.
Probably the easiest decision on the pitch because he is the only right-back I played with. I think Tav will go as the best right-back I have played with in my career in general and, to be honest, people might disagree with me. But I think if you take Alan Hutton out of the equation I don’t think we have had a better right-back for a long time. I think Tav comes in for a lot of unfair criticism at times. Albeit there have been periods where his form has maybe not been to his capabilities, but he is someone that has always stood up to be counted. If he was having a poor time, he would never hide, he would always be there and stick his chest out and do his best for the team. His contributions – goals, assists, clean sheets – I think this was the easiest position to pick.
I think Tav set the bar that high and that is a credit to himself. In terms of a leader, one player wears the armband but every squad needs five, six leaders so I think there does come that extra responsibility wearing that armband. A lot of the pressure and criticism that Tav came under was extremely unfair. I know he is a good captain, I know the leadership qualities he shows day in, day out. I think he is the right man to wear the armband because he is someone who stands up to be counted.
I think centre-half was difficult because in my Rangers career I have played with a large amount and we have had a lot of chopping and changing in that position. Now we have players that have made the position their own and the first pick I would have is Connor Goldson. He has been the most consistent over the two years under Steven Gerrard in that position, he has got a lot of good attributes and he is deceivingly quick. In big games, especially in Europe over the couple of years that Gerrard has been here, he has been a big reason that our record has been what it is. There is a lot talked about the amount of clean sheets and he is a big part of that. Connor is the vice-captain and deservingly so because he is someone that leads by example day-to-day.
I think he was probably the surprise factor in that second season under Warburton. He will be the first to tell you he was brought in as added competition at centre-half, but more so to add his experience to a group of young players and try and help them as much as he can. Within that, he was probably one of the best performers that season, someone who was extremely consistent. If I am going to the trenches with anyone, I would love Clint Hill to be behind me. The second centre-half was a bit more difficult but I am going to go with Clint because of his consistent performances that year.
Mr Consistent. One of the best captains I have worked under in my career, one of the best leaders and someone that leads by example on the field and off the field, day in, day out. Again, he was extremely consistent during my time at the football club and, not only that, but an unbelievable man, somebody that really cared about the club and that I was extremely disappointed when he left. I have no doubt that if circumstances were different there is a good chance he would still be the Rangers left-back just now. He is a man I can’t speak highly enough about and he was superb during my time.
When Waldo’s career looked as if it was coming to an end at Rangers, I was someone that benefitted from that because it allowed me to play, I think, 30-odd games in Gerrard’s first season. Credit to Waldo and the character and type of man he is, he was an extremely good team-mate and he was the first to give me advice and help me and tell me I can play that position because I have the attributes to do so. He was the first one to give me support. I know it was a difficult time for him when he lost the captain’s armband to Tav and I know how much he helped Tav grow into that role as well. A lesser character would be bitter about it, but I know the type of character Waldo is.
When he first came back to the football club, he came in for a bit of criticism for the first 4-6 weeks, but a lot of that was just a case of not having played a lot of football. Day to day in training, you see how much quality he has got. In his first spell at Rangers, we know how good he was and I saw that at first hand when he came back so I knew he was going to be a very good addition to the team in his second spell. I think his performances this season, in the first six to eight months, there was a strong case for Steven Davis to be one of the Players of the Year. He is my first addition.
I think the biggest player improvement since Steven Gerrard came in has been Ryan Jack. He has developed into a completely different player, his game has progressed so well under the manager and he is the most consistent performer since the gaffer came in so he is definitely going to make my team. He is someone you can count on every single week, not just in a big game. The progression in his performances under the manager has been there for everyone to see.
I am talking about games and consistency, but it is not even just about that. Even going into training every day, you know there are going to be people that will perform well. Every single day. No matter what day it is, how many games they have played, what the weather is like. You know you will get the best out of Ryan Jack and Steven Davis every single day and it is that consistency and how reliable they are that is why the manager has got so much trust in them. It is no surprise that the gaffer puts so much trust in them when the big games come around.
The one that is in a more unorthodox position. I have got him just behind the striker. When I joined the club, Kenny – like Allan McGregor at 36, 37 – never missed a day of training and was one of the best performers day in, day out. Like Waldo, he is someone I know who made everyone around him better. He was so consistent himself but he tried to help all the younger players about him. We struggled in that first season back in the SPL and there was a lot of criticism for the team, but Kenny was the standout performer that year and his overall contribution for everyone in the squad was second to none.
A lot of Kenny’s good work does go unnoticed, whether it is on the pitch and how hard he works or off the field and how much he helps others. He is a completely selfless team-mate, completely selfless player, but still chipped in with a lot of huge goals during his time at the club. I don’t know the exact number of appearances he made but he has certainly been a great servant for us. There was no doubt about him being in the team.
I don’t think there are many people out there who are bigger fans of him than me and I think we have still to see the best of him. I am hoping that over the next couple of seasons we will do so. I have gone for Ryan wide left. In terms of individual attributes, Kenty is arguably the best player I have played with at Rangers. The stuff you see him do day in day out is just… He is someone who could play at the top level, he is an exceptional talent and that is the reason the manager and the staff paid so much to get him here – because they know what he can contribute to the club going forward. I say that I don’t think we have seen the best of him because I know what his height is, I know how far he can go and how well he can do. I think one thing he needs to add is probably goal contributions. Over the last couple of years there has been a lot of reliance on Alfredo to get us goals and if he wasn’t playing we were relying on JD. That is one area where Kenty does need to improve but his ability is second to none and he was always going to be in the team.
I would certainly like to hope [Ryan knows how good he can be] because £7million or £8million doesn’t get flung around a lot at Rangers. It has to show him how much the club and the manager think of him and the faith they have put in him to bring him to the football club. I would like to think that certainly helps his belief in his own ability. Like I said, he is in my team but I think he has still got another level.
In terms of contribution to the team, consistency, goals, I have gone for Martyn Waghorn. I know it is not his most natural position but it was a toss up between him and Daniel Candeias. I think Daniel, he has got a Portuguese passport but he has got a Scottish work ethic. I think he was another one that was extremely consistent at Rangers and maybe, similar to Kenty, he would have liked to have got more goals. His contribution to the team was superb but I have gone for Waggy. He got something like 33, 34 goals in the first season, the second season maybe not so much when he fell out of favour with Pedro at the time. He has went on and continued his career with Derby and Ipswich at the time and done really well. I know how good he can be and know how good he was in my first 18 at the football club.
It was unfortunate because you can still see on social media and in interviews to this day that Rangers meant a lot to Waggy. He loved it here, he had a great rapport with the fans and was really settled up in Scotland. He loved playing for Rangers so it was unfortunate that we lost him because we knew how good he was. The fee we lost him for was probably the biggest issue because he was a huge asset to the football club. It doesn’t take away from his performances in his time which are the positive memories I will look at. In his first season he was Player of the Year and he was a great servant for us. I would be happy to have him in any of my teams now.
It is going to be extremely difficult to leave that mad man out – because he will probably batter me! Alfredo certainly gets the nod, an easy decision. I talk about how well all these players have done for the football club but I don’t think any of them have had the run of form that Alfredo has had, especially the first six months of this season. He is by no means the best finisher that I have played with but he is an out and out goal scorer. You really under appreciate the role of a lone striker in Europe, especially with the way we played when we are tight and compact and try and hit teams. That lone striker role can be really lonely and extremely difficult, but I wasn’t witnessing Alfredo dismantle back lines on his own, bully two experienced centre-halves. He was coming up against the likes of Pepe and just ragdolling him about basically. I touched on Greegsy being in the top three goalies of my generation, I think there is a real case for Alfredo, if he continues his form and stays at the football club for an extended period of time, being one of the best strikers we have had for a long time. I was a big fan of Jelavic when I was growing up as a Rangers fan and I think his contribution to the team is certainly on that level. His performances in the last couple of seasons have been outstanding.
He is bonkers, but in a brilliant way. On a day to day basis he is full of carry on, he perks you up, he gets you a laugh. Watching him wrestle Jimmy Bell every day, you always get a laugh out of that. He is someone that all the players love and we all care a lot about him. We want to help him on a day to day basis because we know how much he can be a benefit to the football club. Alfredo 99 per cent of the time is absolutely no issue whatsoever. It is just that one per cent. We don’t want to curb his fire and his desire and enthusiasm but hopefully he can learn from his mistakes and cut out the red cards because we are sick of it.
Huge thank you to Andy for his time, he was a great guest and more importantly a lad who lived his dream as a Ranger
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